When Madeleine married Jacques on December 17, 1919, she was a better catch than he was. Her father was Andre Messager, composer, and the director of the Paris Opera. He was just a boy from a successful industrial family, who spent most of the 1920s trying to convince official Paris that he was a painter.
Not only did Madeleine surrender her family name, Jacques gave her the nickname of Bibi, and that is the name we know her by.
In pictures taken at the Lartigue home in Rouzat in 1921, Bibi has even become a blonde. This change didn't last but the nickname stuck.
Most critics write as though they were her familiars, but we aren't. Spirited and intelligent she appears, making a viewer - this one, anyway - want to know more. Images like Bibi On The Ile Saint-Honore at Cannes (perched on a precipice under a parasol) and Spring (where she embraces a cherry tree) are carefully planned gems. Whereas the summer beach scene and the long shot of Bibi descending snow covered steps at Megeve appear more relaxed.
These pictures of a charmed life were not published for more than four decades. The marriage ended; they went separate ways. He continued to live a charmed life, skating along like a beetle on top of the water. She made a life - away from the camera.